Blog / July 31, 2019

Shopping Local in the South Sound: Our Favorite Small Businesses & Locally Owned Shops to Support

Not only is shopping local great for our area’s economy, but some of the best small businesses in the area (in our humble opinion, of course!) are right here in our own backyard!

We asked South Sound residents which local businesses are their favorites, and here’s what they have to say about their top choices:

Marlene's Market & Deli

2565 South Gateway Central Place
Federal Way, WA 98003

“One of my favorite places to visit in Federal Way is Marlene’s Market & Deli,” says Annie Kirrmaier. “They have everything, from produce to groceries to supplements to beauty products. They have a great deli with an amazing salad bar with entrées to eat there or take home. Definitely worth checking out if you haven’t yet.” This family-owned natural food store started back in 1976 in Federal Way. They have a large selection of whole foods and natural products to choose from, and Marlene’s is especially known for carrying foods that cater to various dietary needs whether you’re gluten-free, vegan, paleo, etc. We recommend following Marlene’s on Facebook for updates on the latest sales, new products, and a schedule of free events and classes they offer.

G&M Honest Performance

33210 Pacific Highway South
Federal Way, WA 98003

Specializing in providing “high quality services to the racing community,” G&M Honest Performance is your go-to shop for high performance auto parts and accessories, race car components, parts and installation services, and much more. According to John Tidwell, it’s the “best place for all things car related if performance is the goal.” The store has been in business for over 30 years! Click here to learn more about their extensive product and service offerings.


2120 South 320th Street
Federal Way, WA 98003

“Computer issues with your Apple product? Let the local computer experts help at Experimac on 320th. They are amazing and will do whatever they can to help you fix your Apple computer, iPhone or iPad issue,” shares local Terri Reade. “I love supporting this local business because it is a great service to have right in our neighborhood!” In addition to helping you fix your Apple products, Experimac will help you choose which product is best for you, trade in your old devices, and just answer questions about how to use your various tech tools. For extra tips on using your Apple products, be sure to follow Experimac on Facebook.

Branches Gardening Center

3909 South 320th Street
Auburn, WA 98001

“Branches Garden Center off of Military Road and 320th street is outstanding,” says local Cheryl Presleigh. “They have a fabulous gift store which is wonderful when looking for a gift that is likely to be different but still sweet and thoughtful. They also have green houses and outdoor space to wander around in and in the spring it’s always a joy to pick up a basket or two for the porch or individual plants for planting in barrels, etc.! Staff is helpful and knowledgeable so take them your questions and if they don’t know the answer they’ll find it for you.” Cheryl is right: Branches Garden Center really does have it all! In addition to a huge selection of plants and a charming gift shop, they offer unique services that include garden consultation (hire an expert to visit your garden and provide you with tailored advice!), have a custom planter created just for you, get your soil tested, visit the “plant doctor,” and so much more. And be sure to follow them on Facebook for updates on sales and special events!

Elev8 Hot Yoga

2000 South 314th Street
Federal Way, WA 98003

“I love the local Elev8 Hot Yoga studio where the owner Angela offers classes in Vinyasa and Hatha as well as classes in Pilates, Barre, and HIIT (High Intensity Low Impact Interval Training),” says Terri Reade. “They welcome both men and women and create a place where you can release your mind and develop your body for a more healthy lifestyle. They have been in Federal Way for three years now and have a great, supportive community of locals that make it feel like family.” Several classes are held all day long at Elev8 Hot Yoga, ensuring you can find something to work with your schedule. Their eclectic class offerings include a huge variety of techniques and styles (including aerial yoga!), and their special first-time and monthly memberships offer something for every budget.

Vision Express

1045 South 320th Street
Federal Way, WA 98003

“I had been carrying around my broken glasses for months in my car wondering where I could get them fixed because I bought them so long ago. I walked into Vision Express and explained that I loved my glasses but needed to get them fixed,” says Terri Reade. “Cheri Johnson at the front desk was sooooo nice and said, ‘Oh, they are not broken, they just need a little fishing line. I'll be right back.’ She was gone for three minutes tops and comes back out with my glasses fixed and didn’t charge me a thing! I have used their services ever since and they are wonderful people!” If you need to take an eye exam, have a contact lens fitting, or pick out a new pair of frames, Vision Express is a one-stop shop! Their onsite lab allows them to create many glasses on the same day as your visit, making the experience as seamless as possible.

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